Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Holier Than You SF to Marin transit advice

Cush is Holier Than You because today is his second day in California, and he's already tackling an 80 mile trip in the rain through at least three transit agencies across four counties on public transportation and a bike.

Cush, a well dressed young man with a BMX bike, obviously looks lost at San Jose Diridon Station this morning when he asks me which train to catch to San Francisco.

"Follow me," I say, and we board the northbound Caltrain bike car at Platform #3.

Cush is visiting from Brooklyn and is headed for a job interview in Fairfax, CA, all the way up in Marin County. All he has on him is a low detail map of the entire Bay Area. It's the kind of map showing the Interstates, where Santa Clara is a dot on the page and the city of San Francisco is a square less then seven centimeters across.

I call up the guy I know with in depth knowledge of public transportation throughout the Bay Area: Murph himself. It's somewhat early so maybe this Eagle Scout hasn't done his Good Turn Daily yet. Murph doesn't disappoint.

From 4th and King, Murph tells Cush to bike the few blocks to 7th and Folsom. There's a bus shelter there where he can catch the green Golden Gate Transit bus to San Rafael -- either routes 70, 71, 80 or 101 will get Cush to San Rafael. From the San Rafael transit center, the #23 bus runs every half hour to Fairfax.

It occurs to me that we could also use 511, so I tell Cush about the Bay Area transportation information service. He dials 511 on his cell phone, goes through the IVR menu, reaches a human at Golden Gate Transit, who tells him 7th & Folsom, GGT 101 to San Rafael, then take the #23 to Fairfax.

1 comment:

murphstahoe said...

He has a bike!!!??? You left out that detail.

Caltrain -> Ferry Building, Ferry to Larkspur. The Ferry is 30 minutes compared to 1 hour for the bus. And it's more scenic/fun.

From there the 29 will take him to San Anselmo on the hour, it's a 2 mile bike ride from San Anselmo to Fairfax - follow the "BIKE ROUTE" signs (or just take SFD). If you missed the 29, it's not very far to downtown San Rafael to get a 23. Of course with my road bike (assuming it wasn't crap pouring rain) I'd take the Ferry to Larkspur then ride to Fairfax.

In practice, given he has some time in his schedule and minimal knowledge of the area, he's probably best off as he did it.